Local courses to help you adapt a green lifestyle

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Local courses to help you adapt a green lifestyle

Conservation of land, air, water, energy, waste and resources are critical to the mission of park districts throughout the Dayton region.

Part of this mission is educating the public on how they can have better eco-friendly habits and lifestyles.

Here are some upcoming classes to help with that effort:

A Solar Powered Future: Solar power isn’t a new concept, but the technology is constantly being researched and refined. Considering new breakthroughs in electrical efficiency, what is the potential for our future to be powered by harvested sunlight? Wednesday, March 4, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Registration requested, but walk-ins welcome. Cox Arboretum MetroPark: Fifth Third Conference Room, 6733 Springboro Pike, Miamisburg, OH 45459. Call (937) 434-9005. Free.

Seeing the Blue LED Light: In 2014, three scientists were awarded the Nobel Prize for the development of the blue LED, a piece of technology that has revolutionized modern lighting efficiency. This class will cover the history of the LED and its current and potential applications. Wednesday, May 6, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Registration requested, but walk-ins welcome. Cox Arboretum MetroPark: Fifth Third Conference Room, 6733 Springboro Pike, Miamisburg, OH 45459. (937) 434-9005. Free.

Green Cleaning Workshop: Learn how to replace toxic, polluting cleaners with safe, effective, natural alternatives and make some of your own to take home. Tuesday, March 10, 6-7:30 p.m. Pre-registration required. Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark: Auditorium, 1301 E. Siebenthaler Ave., Dayton, OH 45414. (937) 277-6545. Cost: $15.

Compost Kitchen: A partnership between Five Rivers MetroParks and Montgomery County Solid Waste District, this three-part program covers everything you need to know to compost effectively. Talks and activities explore soil ecology, chemical-free gardening and household waste management. Participants completing all three programs receive a free Earth Machine brand composter. Tuesday, April 7-21, 10 a.m. to noon. Possum Creek MetroPark: Possum Creek Education Building, 4790 Frytown Road, Dayton, OH 45418. Pre-registration required. (937) 275-7275. Free.

Worm Composting Workshop: Learn the science and art of vermiculture and vermicomposting. Self-proclaimed “worm wrangler” Connie Duncan will lead you through all aspects of worm bin care and send you home with a functioning bin. Small starter bins, worms and materials provided to get you started. Wednesday, April 29, 10 a.m. to noon. Possum Creek MetroPark: Possum Creek Education Building, 4790 Frytown Road, Dayton, OH, 45418. Pre-registration required. (937) 275-7275. Cost: $15.

Rain Barrels and Gardens: Celebrate Earth Day by learning how to build a rain garden and make a rain barrel. Participants will be able to take their rain barrel home. The Miami County Park District is partnering with Miami County Soil and Water for this program. Wednesday, April 22, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Lost Creek Reserve, 2385 E. State Route 41 east of Troy. Cost for class is $40 (includes rain barrel). Class is limited to 25 participants. Must register for the program by calling Miami County Soil and Water at (937) 335-7645 or emailing info@miamiswcd.org.

Miami Valley Gardening Conference: For home gardeners, lawn care professionals and other enthusiasts. Saturday, March 7, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Sinclair Community College Ponitz Center, 444 W. Third St. in downtown Dayton. The morning keynote is Thomas Rainer, a registered landscape architect, teacher and writer living in Arlington, Va. His talk is titled “The American Garden in a Post-Wild World.” Rainer is a passionate advocate for design that doesn’t imitate nature but interprets it. He has designed landscapes for the U.S. Capitol grounds, the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and the New York Botanical Garden. The afternoon keynote is Kelly D. Norris, an award-winning author and plantsman from Iowa and the first horticulture manager at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden. He’s known for his book, “A Guide to Bearded Irises: Cultivating the Rainbow for Beginners and Enthusiasts,” which won the 2013 American Horticultural Society Book Award. His talk is titled “Dig This: Stylish Gardening for Savvy Gardeners.” The conference also offers a variety of speakers covering topics focused on gardening for the next decade. Sessions include proactive choices for a better environment, making time in the garden more productive and plant selections for the future. The conference will end with a session on how to create the most beautiful garden possible. Registration is $50, which includes all materials, door prizes, a catered lunch, parking and refreshments. For more info, contact Betty Hoevel at 937-277-6545.

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